How to Select a Nursing College in High Springs Florida
Choosing the right nursing school near High Springs FL may seem like a difficult endeavor, particularly if you aren’t sure what to look for in a good degree program. As you may already know, in order to practice as a registered nurse, you must receive the necessary education and training in order to become licensed. So it is critically important that you research and determine the qualifications of each program you are contemplating before enrolling in your ultimate selection. Unfortunately, too many future students base their selection exclusively on the price of tuition and the distance of the school. Going with the least costly school or the one that is nearest to your home is probably not the most ideal way to pick a nursing program. There are various essential additional factors to investigate before you decide where to enroll in classes. But before we explore that checklist, let’s first cover what the job of a registered nurse is in our healthcare system, along with the nursing degree alternatives that are offered.
Registered Nurse Job Activities
Registered nurses are the most significant occupation in the High Springs FL medical care delivery system. RNs practice in numerous different medical environments, namely hospitals, family practices, outpatient clinics, nursing homes and even schools. Their primary duty is to help doctors in the treatment of their patients. However, the particular duties of a registered nurse will be dependent on their job or specialization as well as where they work. A portion of the responsibilities of an RN may include:
- Administering medications
- Overseeing patients
- Conducting physical examinations
- Managing care
- Supervising LPNs, LVNs and nurse aides
- Instructing patients and their families
- Managing health records and charts
Nurses with a more advanced degree may have more complex job duties and accountabilities. Nurse practitioners (NP), for example, must hold a Master’s Degree and normally work more independently than their RN counterparts. They can administer primary or specialty care services in High Springs FL, prescribe medications, and diagnose and treat basic illnesses or injuries.
Nursing Degree Options
There are several degree options available to become a registered nurse in High Springs FL. And to become an RN, a student must enroll in an accredited school and program. A student can acquire a qualifying degree in as little as two years, or advance to attain a graduate degree for a total of six years. Following are some short summaries of the nursing degrees that are offered.
- Associates. The Associate Degree in Nursing (ADN) is normally a 2 year program made available by Florida community colleges. It prepares graduates for an entry level job in nursing in medical centers including hospitals, clinics or nursing homes. Many utilize the ADN as an entry into nursing and ultimately earn a higher degree.
- Bachelor’s. The Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) provides more extensive training than the ADN. It is commonly a 4 year program offered at Florida colleges and universities. Licensed RNs may be allowed to complete an accelerated program based on their prior training or degree and professional experience (RN to BSN). Those applying to the program might want to progress to a clinical or administrative position, or be more competitive in the job market.
- Master’s. The Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) is typically a 2 year program after obtaining the BSN. The MSN program offers specialization training, for instance to become a nurse practitioner in High Springs FL or concentrate on administration, management or teaching.
Once a graduating student has attained one of the above degrees, he or she must pass the National Council Licensure Examination for Registered Nurses (NCLEX-RN) to become licensed. Other requirements for licensing fluctuate from state to state, so don’t forget to check with the Florida board of nursing for any state mandates.
LVN and LPN Courses
There are principally two scholastic accreditations available that provide education to become either an LPN or an LVN in High Springs FL. The one that can be concluded in the shortest amount of time, usually about twelve months, is the certificate or diploma course. The next choice is to earn a Practical Nursing Associate Degree. These programs are broader in nature than the diploma alternative and usually require 2 years to complete. The advantage of Associate Degrees, aside from offering a higher credential and more extensive instruction, are that they furnish more transferrable credit toward a Bachelor’s Degree in nursing. No matter the type of credential you pursue, it needs to be Florida approved and accredited by the National League for Nursing Accrediting Commission (NLNAC) or any other national accrediting organization. The NLNAC attests that the core curriculum properly prepares students to become Practical Nurses, and that most graduates pass the 50 state required NCLEX-PN licensing exam.
In contrast to many other licensed nurses, certified nursing assistants do not have to attain a college degree. CNA instruction can be obtained at a community college or at either a vocational or trade school in the High Springs FL area. The duration of the training can take anywhere from just one to three months, resulting in either a certificate or a diploma. Under the 1987 Nursing Home Reform Act, students are mandated to receive at least 75 hours of instruction, 16 of which need to be clinical or “hands-on” training hours. Keep in mind that this is the minimum amount of training required and that each state has its specific prerequisites. So it’s essential to make sure that the program you enroll in not only meets the federal requirements, but also those for the state where you will be practicing. One recommendation is to contact the health or nursing board for Florida to make certain that the training is state approved. As well as the training, each state requires a passing score on a competency test for certification. Depending on the state, there may be other requirements as well.
Nursing Online Programs
Attending nursing schools online is growing into a more in demand way to receive training and attain a nursing degree in Florida. Many schools will require attendance on campus for part of the training, and almost all programs call for a specified amount of clinical rotation hours carried out in a local healthcare facility. But since the balance of the training may be accessed online in your High Springs FL home, this alternative may be a more convenient answer to finding the free time to attend college for some students. Pertaining to tuition, a number of online degree programs are cheaper than other on campus choices. Even other expenses such as for commuting and study materials may be minimized, helping to make education more affordable. And many online programs are accredited by organizations such as the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE) for BSN and MSN degrees. And so if your job and family commitments have left you with little time to work toward your academic goals, it could be that an online nursing training program will make it easier to fit a degree into your active schedule.
Things to Ask Nurse Degree Programs
Once you have chosen which nursing degree to enroll in, and if to attend your classes on campus or online, you can use the following guidelines to start narrowing down your options. As you probably are aware, there are a large number of nursing schools and colleges within Florida and the United States. So it is important to lower the number of schools to choose from to ensure that you will have a manageable list. As we previously discussed, the site of the school relative to High Springs FL and the cost of tuition are undoubtedly going to be the initial two points that you will look at. But as we also emphasized, they should not be your only qualifiers. So prior to making your ultimate decision, use the following questions to evaluate how your pick compares to the other programs.
Accreditation. It’s a good idea to make sure that the degree or certificate program along with the school is accredited by a U.S. Department of Education recognized accrediting agency. Besides helping verify that you get a quality education, it may help in securing financial aid or student loans, which are frequently not available for non-accredited schools near High Springs FL.
Licensing Preparation. Licensing criteria for registered nurses differ from state to state. In all states, a passing score is needed on the National Council Licensure Examination (NCLEX-RN) together with graduation from an accredited school. Some states require a specified number of clinical hours be completed, as well as the passing of additional tests. It’s important that the High Springs FL area school you are enrolled in not only delivers an outstanding education, but also prepares you to satisfy the minimum licensing requirements for Florida or the state where you will be working.
Reputation. Visit internet rating companies to see what the evaluations are for all of the schools you are considering. Ask the accrediting organizations for their reviews as well. In addition, get in touch with the Florida school licensing authority to determine if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can speak with some regional High Springs FL healthcare organizations you’re interested in working for after graduation and ask what their opinions are of the schools as well.
Graduation and Job Placement Rates. Find out from the RN programs you are considering what their graduation rates are as well as how long on average it takes students to complete their programs. A low graduation rate may be an indication that students were dissatisfied with the program and dropped out. It’s also important that the schools have high job placement rates. A high rate will not only substantiate that the school has a good reputation within the High Springs FL healthcare community, but that it also has the network of contacts to assist students gain a position.
Internship Programs. The most effective way to get experience as a registered nurse is to work in a clinical environment. Almost all High Springs FL area nursing degree programs require a specified number of clinical hours be completed. A number of states have minimum clinical hour requirements for licensing too. Check if the schools have associations with regional hospitals, clinics or labs and help with the positioning of students in internships.
Select the Right RN School near High Springs FL
Picking the right registered nursing degree program is arguably the most critical step to starting a new career in the health care field. There are a number of aspects that you need to consider when selecting a nursing school. These variables will be prioritized differently depending on your existing career objectives, obligations, and financial status. As we have emphasized in this content, it is critical that you select an RN college and a degree program that are each accredited and have exceptional reputations within the healthcare community. By utilizing our checklist of qualifying questions, you will be able to develop a short list of schools to select from so that you can make your final selection. And with the appropriate degree and training, combined with your hard work and ambition to succeed, you can become a licensed registered nurse in High Springs FL.
Why Did You Want to Be a Nurse?When preparing to interview for a nursing position, it's advantageous to consider questions you might be asked. Among the things that recruiters typically ask nursing applicants is "What drove you to pick nursing as a profession?". What the interviewer is hoping to learn is not just the personal reasons you might have for being a nurse, but additionally what characteristics and skills you have that make you exceptional at your profession. You will likely be asked questions relating primarily to nursing, in addition to a significant number of standard interview questions, so you must organize a number of approaches about how you want to respond to them. Because there are so many variables that go into choosing a career, you can address this fundamental question in a number of ways. When preparing an answer, attempt to include the reasons the work appeals to you along with the strengths you possess that make you an exceptional nurse and the perfiect choice for the position. Don't try to memorize a response, but jot down several concepts and talking points that pertain to your own strengths and experiences. Going over sample responses can assist you to prepare your own thoughts, and give you ideas of what to discuss to enthuse the interviewer.
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